A ‘ninth night’ of Hanukkah and other holiday highlights from Washington

We reported yesterday and this morning on a busy Festival of Lights in D.C. — so busy, it lasted nine nights, with White House festivities running into last evening.

Blame Thanksgivukkah, I say. I have yet to hear an answer from the White House, but the likeliest explanation for the Hanukkah+1 celebration is that the first day fell on Thanksgiving, when all of D.C. tends to exit for the long weekend, leaving precious few available days for parties.

Speaking of Thanksgivukkah, here’s a shot of President Obama holding up a “menurkey” — a hybrid turkey-menorah — taken by a relative of its creator, 10-year-old Asher Weintraub of New York.

In other random D.C. Hanukkah notes:

* At last night’s White House Hanukkah party, when Obama told the crowd about the passing of Nelson Mandela, there was a call and response involving, of all people, Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg:

Three #SCOTUS justices at White House Hanukkah reception. When Obama lauds #Mandela for showing “justice can prevail,” Ginsburg says “Yes!”

* And in The Washington Post, a reader asks why the “National Menorah” lighting put on in D.C. by Chabad in Washington’s outdoor Ellipse can’t up the classy a bit and get Kelly Clarkson to perform.

* Finally, in its advance memo to Jewish media covering its Hanukkah party, the White House had the temerity to warn:

(Reminder that the food at the reception is for guests only, not media.)

Honestly, can we help it if the machers throw us doughnuts?

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